A solidarity circle is expanding to support Gushikenn Takamatsu-san, a volunteer excavating the remains of the dead. He is conducting a hunger strike in protest of using the earth-and-sand from the southern part of Okinawa for reclaiming the sea to construct the military base in Henoko. A signature campaign to support him is going well, the number reaching almost 40,000 by Mar 20. Signatures given via the Internet continue to increase from the United States, South Korea, and Europe.
Gushiken-san recently submitted a request to the Okinawa Prefectural Assembly and all the city/town/village assemblies in Okinawa to issue a written opinion requesting the central government to abandon the sediment collection plan. In response, the Naha Municipal Assembly and Nanjo City Assembly passed the protest statement on the 22nd. At least nine other assemblies will pass the resolution by the end of this month. As for the Prefectural Assembly, the Liberal Democratic Party has shown a cautious attitude. Although unanimous consent is difficult, it will pass by a majority in favor. On the other hand, the Itoman City Assembly, which has a solid conservative base, adopted the statement that although they do not protest the soil collection, they at least agreed that “the soil collection plan should take the citizens’ feelings into serious consideration.” The Nago City Assembly will undoubtedly approve the statement, although the base construction is progressing within its jurisdiction.
On the 18th, Okinawa Prefectural Office received an application submitted by a mining company. Within 30 days, the Ofice must decide if it issues a permit or not. A senior member of the Prefectural Assembly said that the passing of the protest statement in many local assemblies was “very encouraging.” The ruling parties are collectively working toward realizing an unprecedented legal order to stop the soil collection. It looks like we will have the critical moment next month.
(In front of Camp Schwab Gate)
It was a chilly day for a change. About 40 people, including members of the Okinawa Heiwa Shimin Rennraku-Kai (Okinawa Peace Forum), sat in protest from 8:30 in the morning. N-san, a university professor from Washington, D.C., joined the sit-in. During his week-long stay in Okinawa, he reported the situation in Henoko to his students by zoom.
The U.S. media also broadcasted Gushiken Takamatsu-san’s news, who went on a hunger strike in front of the prefectural government office to oppose the soil extraction in the southern part of the prefecture, and it seems that interest in the issue is increasing there.The world should know this inhuman folly of the Japanese government.
A total of 132 vehicles entered the base to deliver construction materials in three separate rounds.
The landfill status as per the latest pictures taken by a drone:
In Area #2-1 on the Henoko side, four meters high landfill is complete, and the revetment to elevate the ground level for additional four meters is almost complete.In Area 2, approximately 30% of the landfill remains incomplete, but the revetment is 80% complete.
According to Okuma Masanori-san, a civil engineer who took the pictures, “The construction is progressing faster than previously projected. At this rate, the 4-meter raising work may start immediately.” The writer’s analysis presented last week that “the construction was significantly behind schedule” was a mistake. My apologies!
(Ryukyu Cement Awa Pier)
Although the number of protesters was small, they separated into two groups at the entrance and exit. Perhaps because there were only a few protesters, the truck drivers washed the tires of two trucks simultaneously at the exit to speed up the operation.
A total of 837 truckloads were moved onto three carriers and left for Henoko.
(Motobu Shiokawa Pier)
Approximately ten members, including Motobu Shimagurumi (Motobu Chapter of the Island-Wide Conference), protested all day. By the closing time of 5 p.m., the workers moved 562 truckloads of earth and sand onto four rampway-barges.
Number of dump trucks to date and percentage against the total
The estimation calculated on the basis of the number of ruckloads serves only as a reference.
Number of dump trucks which made delivery from December 2018 to the end of December 2020 302,705(3.746%)
|Number of dump trucks
|Weightt of earth/sand
|Converted to volume
|Volume per Total
|363,338||1,816,690 t||908,345㎥||4.497 %|
※ Cumulative since Dec. 1, 2019
※① Calculated by assuming that the average truckload per dump truck would be 5 tons
※② Calculated by assuming that a specific weight of soil/sand set to be 2
※③ Percentage against 20.200.000m3, the total volume of earth and sand required for the landfill.